Saturday, March 29, 2014
Pinterest Favorites Of The Week

Pinterest Favorites Of The Week

Saturday, March 29, 2014
Pinterest Favorites, The Beauty Department, SheKnows, Alyssa Barnes Web Design, Vegan Ice Cream Recipe

It's time for Pinterest Favorites of the Week! I've moved Pinterest Favorites to the weekend. It makes so much more sense this way, don't ya think? Who does a weekly favorites post in the middle of the week. This girl! But no more. You can count on Pinterest Favorites every weekend from now on. Hopefully I'll be able to get them up on Fridays. If not, Saturdays will fit the bill!

This week I found some fun + helpful + delicious things in my hours of pinning. Can we all agree that the triangle bobby pin fun and lavender skirt are happiness!? Anywho, this is what I'm loving this week. Happy Spring my people!

DIY Colorblock Spoons. I stinking love this. It's really easy and the metallic paint adds a pretty contrast with the woodgrain of the spoon. I love anything with a bit of shimmer. I will definitely be rocking this DIY in my kitchen soon!

How To: Alternative Braid. It's spring which means it's time to break out the side braids! If you have day old curls a side braid is your friend. This braid is a cross between a messy fishtail and traditional braid. So funky and perfect for casual spring days. I did a test run at 3am and it was not my best attempt. This actually is simple and terribly cute.

"You Got This". This is my quote for the week. I actually say this to family and friends as a simple encouragement at the end of a conversation about something they may feel nervous about. It's short and sweet but true. If you want something and you're prepared and pursuing it but there are difficulties or you're feeling nervous about it, give it your all with boldness, and you totally got this.

Fun With Bobby. I never thought to use bobby pins as a fashion statement. How fun is this!? It's such a simple, subtle statement. Aren't those fun. The little fashion statements that not everyone will notice are some of my favorites. You could actually do this to fasten the loose hairs at the nape of the neck in a side braid. Add a little something extra!

9 Practical Ways To Get Serious About Blogging. These nine tips are great! Shanice actually has a lot of posts like this on her blog. They are always very helpful, and sometimes just serve as nice reminders for those times when blogging kind of wears you out. Blogging is a job. Your blog needs constant attention if you truly want to grow it. These nine tips are really helpful if you want to get serious about your blog! If you need to find some good resources for blogging, Shanice's blog is the place to go.

DIY Fluted Hem Skirt. I'm not sure that I can actually put into words how much I love this. It's lavender. It has a fluted hem. IT'S LAVENDER. The cut is also flattering, and we all love a good flattering cut. This skirt is happens to be great for spring too. There's kind of a spring theme to this week's post. Pair it with a strappy blouse and a snazzy pair of sandals and you'd be good to go! Better get to sewing!

Vegan Mint Chocolate Chip Ice Cream. This vegan ice cream recipe is absolute heaven. I have a Kitchen-Aid ice cream maker that I'm putting to work with this recipe! Ice cream is a weakness of mine. In my mind, ice cream is an essential food group. It's a problem. 

How To: Find The Correct Image Source On Pinterest. It's really frustrating when you pin something and then try to follow the link later on and it doesn't take you to the source of the photo, tutorial, or recipe. It's terribly disappointing. Alyssa has a couple of tips for easily finding the correct original source for your pins! Very helpful!

Blush Balancer. This lovely tutorial from The Beauty Department shows you exactly how to add the perfect natural flush of blush to your face. This is the technique I use when I wear blush. Give it a try to create the illusion of a healthy glow for spring!

What are you loving this week?

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Monday, March 24, 2014
Finding Joy In Singleness

Finding Joy In Singleness

Monday, March 24, 2014
Singleness, The Knot, Marriage and Dating

Hey! So I was in the kitchen with my mom, eating Tetrazzini out of the pot, discussing my love for Tim Tebow ( What can I say, I have a thing for tall, athletic guys, who live out their faith ) and I got to thinking about singleness. At a cursory glance singleness can seem like a real downer. Especially if you're marriage minded, as I am. We all crave companionship, and when it is absent life can seem a little lonely sometimes. That's how I used to feel about singleness. I can't say that that is my perspective anymore. It hasn't been for a while. So often we are led to believe that if we are single, we are half a person or incomplete. That is a lie! You are a whole person and you are complete in God! The blessing of a husband will compliment your life, but it will not complete it, or complete you.

I had a eureka moment one day and realized that, yes marriage is good, but singleness is good also. There is so much that God can do with you in the time that you're single. We can find such joy in serving the body of Christ with the gifts that God has given us.  Being married isn't the end all of everything, but it is absolutely a good and Godly thing to desire. God has a purpose for your life. He has a purpose for your singleness. God has a beautiful and wonderful design for us as women. It is a design that brings fulfillment in our lives, maximizes our uniqueness, and brings glory to the name of God so that He may be glorified and His Word honored. 

Enjoy singleness! Serve God with all of your heart, your soul, and your mind. Get involved in things that advance His kingdom! You will find blessing, fulfillment, and true joy. This is what I have found. I am content and happy right where I am in life, and looking with great excitement toward all of the things that God has for my future, including marriage, someday. Until that day comes, I am enjoying all of the opportunities I have been presented to pursue the things that I truly love, and to serve the Lord.

To my fellow single young women out there, I encourage you to embrace your singleness and pursue God's purpose for your life! Use this time in your life to pursue the things that you love, and use your gifts to serve the Lord. You'll find such tremendous fulfillment and contentment!

Share your heart! Are you in a season of singleness? How do you find contentment? Have a beautiful day! xo, Jen

Thursday, March 20, 2014
Grow Your Blog With Facebook

Grow Your Blog With Facebook

Thursday, March 20, 2014
Grow Your Blog With Facebook, Using social media to grow your blog, using Facebook to grow your blog, Facebook and blogging

Hey! So I'm finally back home from the Sunshine state. I've done very well at being lazy about blogging since I returned. In my defense though, I've only been home since late Monday night. Which technically was early Tuesday morning. So I'm actually doing really well here! 

I've slowly been working my way through this Grow Your Blog mini series. It's a lot of fun to do and hopefully is helpful to you lovely people! This go around is all about using Facebook to grow your blog. You may or may not be on the fence about Facebook. Some bloggers love it and some hate it. I've heard some bloggers say half of the time posts only make it to fourteen ( or less ) news feeds. Other's swear by Facebook. I was pretty skeptical when I created Boone+Owl's Facebook page, but as time has passed I have found it to be a useful tool. So I've picked a side and jumped the fence. 

I love Facebook.

If you're a blogger, you need to have a Facebook page. There. I've said it. It's just that simple. That being said, you must use it wisely. So here are some tips to help you make the most of your blog's Facebook page and drive more traffic to your blog!

Images equal clicks. The main purpose of a Facebook page is to inform your followers/readers about your new posts and push traffic back toward your blog. If your Facebook post doesn't catch someone's eye, they're not going to follow the link. Images equal clicks. Make sure you include a lovely image from your post to catch your readers' attention on their news feed. This is one of the best things you can do to help your posts be seen on Facebook news feeds. 

| Engage with your readers. You don't have to only share your blog posts on your Facebook page. Offer up a conversation starter by asking your readers a question. Give your readers a chance to share something about themselves or share their opinion. Even if it's something simple. For example: Emily from The Freckled Fox is excellent at this. She recently posted a picture of a cute little cactus and asked her readers what the feisty little cactus should be named. (Emily and I share a love of naming things). It was a fun way to engage with her readers and she got a wonderful lighthearted response from many ladies, including myself. Asking questions is a wonderful way to engage with your readers. Make it fun!

| Status Updates. Share things about yourself, but keep it fun and professional! In the middle of a DIY project you plan to blog about next week? Share a snippet with your readers and tell them how it's coming along. Get hit in the eye with a granola bar and now have your first official black eye? ( This seriously happened to me ). Well, tell your readers about that too! Keep your readers up to date, and share blog related glimpses of your life. Keep it fun!

| Etiquette. When your readers do engage on your Facebook page, respond to them ASAP! It's important to respond to questions or comments left on a post. After all, blogging is about building relationships. You want to be accessible and personable with your readers. Be appreciative, caring, and friendly, it goes a long way. 

And there it is my lovely people! Four tips to help you grow your blog with Facebook.

Are you on the "love it" or "hate it" side on Facebook pages? How has Facebook helped your blog? Tell me about it!

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Saturday, March 15, 2014
Spring Break In Florida | Beauty In The Midst Of Sorrow

Spring Break In Florida | Beauty In The Midst Of Sorrow

Saturday, March 15, 2014
Happy Saturday! It's day five of Spring Break in Florida. Sadly, there are only two days left in said break. And really, this hasn't been a normal Spring Break. I've been in Florida dealing with a death in the family. It has been very sad around here, and yet, there are moments of joy being with family. And that is priceless.

I really love to find the beauty in things. Sometimes what I think is beautiful isn't to others, and that's okay. But I find comfort and happiness in capturing things that I find lovely. I always have my camera on me. It's terribly beaten up at this point. It jumped out of my hands one day and hurled itself down a flight of stairs. I've sat on it, stepped on it, dropped it on the pavement, slung it into walls ( that's a problem for me, I knock into walls often ), I've done every destructive thing possible to it. She ain't pretty, but she works. With that old beaten up camera I document the little things in life that spark memories, things that I admire, things that make me laugh, things that are the lovely handiwork of God. I love life's beautiful and memorable moments. Documenting those moments in pictures is one of my great joys in life. So, as I've been here in Florida with family, I've documented my surroundings; taking pictures of things that make me smile, things that are lovely, things that you'll probably wonder why I took a picture of them. Like the gelato. What's up with that? I document everything. That includes the Florida tradition of daily trips to Paciugo. 

These pictures are my way of finding the beauty and happiness around me in the midst of sorrow. Especially when I capture something and I know that Barbara Ann would have thought it was delightful. Or seeing something and knowing that she would have urged me to take a picture of it. So here is a snapshot of the beauty, fun, and happiness I've found during my time in Florida.
What do you find beautiful?

Spring Break In Florida, Beauty In The Midst Of Sorrow, Pink flowers
Spring Break In Florida, cobblestone, Stock Photos

Spring Break In Florida, purple flowers, sorrow

Spring Break In Florida, pink flower tree, pink flowers, florida trees
Spring Break In Florida, family photos, florida retirement home

Spring Break In Florida, gelato, paciugo, frozen yogurt recipe

Spring Break In Florida, palm tree, florida palm trees, sorrow, grief

Spring Break In Florida, lens flare, photography
Spring Break In Florida, lens flare, florida, spring break 2014
Spring Break In Florida, photography classes, family traditions
Spring Break In Florida, spring break 2014, beauty, photography, family traditions

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Saturday, March 8, 2014
Brittney | Like An Arrow

Brittney | Like An Arrow

Saturday, March 8, 2014
Happy Saturday! So Brittney from Like An Arrow ( formerly True Vintage Love ) is one of my favorite bloggers. She also happens to be hanging out on my sidebar. Yay! Brittney has a wonderfully creative blog and her style shines through every post! Am I allowed to admit that I may be slightly jealous of her creativity? I find her blog and her style very inspiring! Get to know her below and definitely check out her pretty space!

LIKE AN ARROW  |  Bloglovin  |  Twitter  |  Pinterest  |  Instagram  |  Google+

What are three things you absolutely can't live without?
 Hmmm… my Clarisonic for one. My skin would be such a mess without it. Netflix. Although that’s a love/hate relationship. (READ: I. GET. NOTHING. DONE.) The Graco swing we bought when Kendalynn was like a month old. THANK YOU GRACO. Thank you for making a miracle device. Kendalynn knocks out in like 10 mins or less.

• Who inspires you most?
I have always answered this question the same way, all twenty-two years of my life. But now it’s different. When you have a child, they inspire you the most. You want to do good, you want to be good. You want to give them everything and show them what being a great person is. But also, my mother inspires me. She raised my brother and I by herself all my life and we went through so many things, but just seeing the way she lived life and how she made sure to provide for us, makes me feel like I can do anything.

• Tell us something we don't know about you!
A lot of people don’t know what I was a dancer on the drill team in high school. I was totally the opposite from everyone. Girly, yes, but my love for black will never die. Black nails, black clothes, black purse, etc. I’m still that way. I listened to different music, hung out with different people, and just was different all around. That didn’t stop me from doing something I love. Dancing. I love to dance. I haven’t in a long time, but I definitely want to do mommy and me ballet classes when Kendalynn gets old enough. If she wants to, that is. (I am really crossing my fingers though.)

• What do you do to stay creative?
 It sounds so weird, but the times I come up with some of my best ideas are when I am just sitting in the car looking out the window, watching tv but not really watching (you know what I mean, you do it too), or when I am laying in bed, falling asleep. Don’t you hate that? But it’s true, that’s when the ideas flow. Sometimes I will put them in my notes section on my iPhone, or sometimes I even draw sketches of stuff on some apps I have. When I am stuck in a rut, I like looking through Pinterest through stuff, listening to music, and just browsing other blogs online.

• How did you get into blogging?
 It’s so weird when I think about this. I have been reading peoples blogs for a long time, without even thinking about the fact that they’re a ‘blogger’ or what it even means to be a blogger. I’d look up something like “How to fill in eyebrows” or something random and I would find stuff on blogs, bookmark it, sign up by email, or stalk the page really (guilty of still doing it.) Or when I was getting married I would search through stuff, too. Then I got pregnant and wanted to keep an online scrapbook, and what better way to do that than blogging? I starting writing about Kendalynn, which led to the story of my husband and I, which led to my DIY wedding. Then I got the idea of just posting all the DIY stuff I do, because I did a lot. Now it’s a hot mess of everything, lol. Blogging just sort of happened. It wasn’t even planned to be honest.

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